Med. Weter. 75

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Effects of three aging methods on the Longissimus lumborum muscle from Holstein-Friesian steers
The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of three aging processes (traditional dry aging, wet aging in vacuum shrink pack and dry aging in a highly moisture-permeable bag) in five aging times (0, 7, 14, 21, 28 days) for their effects on physical, chemical, microbial, histological, textural and sensory properties of beef Longissimus lumborum muscle from Holstein-Friesian steers. Longissimus lumborum muscles were aged dry (D), in a dry-aging bag (B) and a vacuum shrink pack (V) for 28 days at 0.5°C±0.5 with 80% humidity. An increase was observed in pH and TBARS values of all samples. All methods caused a decrease in the WBSF value. The decrease of WBSF was rapid until the 14th day. V samples had lower WBSF values in comparison with others. While the L*and a* values were similar on the 28th day in all groups, b* values were different (p<0.05). There were no significant effects of aging treatment on the sarcomere length on the 28th day (p>0.05). An increase was also observed in the numbers of the total viable count, total psychrophilic bacteria, Enterobacteriaceae, lactic acid bacteria and yeast-mold in all groups. B aging may have a positive effect on safety, quality, yield and shelf stability of aged-beef. V aging significantly improves both textural and sensory characteristics of meat. The most positive effect on flavor, juiciness, tenderness and overall like were observed in the V aged treatment on the 14th day of aging. The use of the vacuum shrink pack is considered to be an alternative packing material in the wet aging method to improve the physicochemical and sensory quality of beef.
Keywords: beef, dry aging, dry aging bag, meat quality, vacuum shrink.